Short Rib Tacos

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My new favorite thing is the slow cooker. Seriously easy. Do the work the night before, plug it in in the morning, come home from work and your meal is there waiting for you and making your apartment smell delicious, to boot!

Well, maybe not this recipe as much. It actually involves a fair amount of work unless you make the tortillas ahead of time too. Speaking of, this is my first time using paleo tortillas. I used Ditch the Wheat’s recipe. They were decent – sort of a cross between paleo pancakes and very thin omelet style eggs. Let’s be real though – when there’s slow cooked meat inside of them, that’s what you’re really paying attention to.

I made this dish on a Sunday so while the ribs were slow cooking, I made the tortillas, prepped the toppings and did a bunch of other meal prep for the week. It worked out great. And we had leftover tacos for the rest of the week!

For the slow cooker:

  • 2 lbs of beef short ribs (or 1 pack)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 2 cups of store bought beef broth (I used Trader Joe’s)

Tortillas:

Toppings:

  • Sliced avocados
  • Diced green cabbage, tossed with lime juice and salt
  • Pico de gallo
  • Queso fresco
  • Diced cilantro

Instructions:

1)   Line a baking pan with foil and set your broiler to high. Place the ribs on the foil and season liberally with salt and pepper. Place ribs in the oven for about 5 minutes. Take the ribs out and flip them, and broil for another five minutes.

2)   While ribs are broiling, mix all the spices (except garlic) together in a small bowl or ramekin.

3)   When ribs are done broiling, place them in a single layer in the slow cooker (you may want to cut them or set them on their side to make this happen.

4)   Pour your seasonings evenly over the top of the ribs. Crush the garlic cloves over all of it, and pour in the beef broth – it’s fine if it’s not bone broth, because it will become bone broth after simmering all day! Short ribs rock.

5)   Set the slow cooker on low, and let simmer for about 8 hours.

6)   When ready, pull the short ribs out of the slow cooker and place on a cutting board. Use forks to shred the beef off of the bones into it’s own bowl for taco assembly.  It should fall apart pretty easily at this point. You can set aside the bones to re-use in later bone broth if you want.

7)   Prepare your toppings and assemble tacos!

 

DSC_0041Tortillas^^  All prepped, and ready to be made into some epic tacos.

photo-6Later in the week, I used a lot of the same ingredients to make another batch of slightly different tacos.  Too easy.

 

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Egg & Almond Pancakes

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Confession: I hate bananas.  I’m also not a huge fan of coconut. I’m the worst paleo baker in the world.  There are some amazing recipes for paleo pancakes but so many of them call for either bananas or coconut flour! So, I’m adding my own pancake recipe to the internet’s collection of paleocakes… banana & coconut flour free.

This is obviously my new favorite recipe, and is especially awesome topped with lemon juice, grass-fed butter and maple syrup, strawberries, rhubarb, pears, etc.  No breakfast would be complete without bacon, so that’s included in my photo too.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup tapioca flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tbsp raw honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

Instructions:

1) Whisk dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl

2) In a separate (larger) mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, honey, vanilla and apple cider vinegar.

3) Add the dry ingredients into the egg mixture, whisking until there are no more lumps.

3) Make pancakes!  Heat up a large frying pan over low heat (I use between 2 & 4) with 1-2 tablespoons of grass fed butter.  Use a ¼ cup to scoop and pour them 3 at a time into the frying pan.  I like to keep my heat pretty low and watch them carefully to flip as soon as they start to bubble.

I like them best cooked in a LOT of grass-fed butter, but I’ve also cooked them in leftover bacon fat, or coconut oil.  Just make sure you add a new 1-2 tablespoons in between each batch of pancakes in order to get that delicious crispy edge.

4) Top with fresh fruit, maple syrup, or both!

 

Ground Beef & Bacon Sweet Potato Fried Rice

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I grew up eating fried rice. My mom would make it in huge batches and the whole family would eat it for the next week. It’s one of those dishes that’s ridiculously easy, but so comforting and fried that you get a huge bang for your buck, at least as far as the ratio of work to amazingness.

So, of course, as an adult it’s become one of my favorite meals to both eat and play around with different versions of in my kitchen. What I’ve especially liked about fried rice as I’ve modified my recipe over the years is that you can basically put anything in it, and the rice, sesame oil and soy sauce will sort of blend it into something amazing — leftover chicken, bacon, pineapples, veggies of any kind, or my favorite: leftover Thai curry.

When I first shifted to a more paleo oriented diet, I missed having a big bowl of something so warm and comforting and conveniently easy. That was before I discovered Inspiralized. If you haven’t checked out this blog, do it now! Ali has been a huuuge inspiration to me as I try to navigate the challenge of planning nutrient-rich vegetable oriented meals. She brilliantly discovered how to make “rice” out of sweet potatoes using a vegetable spiralizer. If you don’t have one of these, I definitely recommend buying one – it makes cooking with vegetables way more versatile. (For more fried rice amazingness, check out Ali’s vegetarian version!)

To my great surprise, the sweet potato rice has the same comforting carb-y feel as rice! I don’t mean that it tasted like rice; it didn’t. But it definitely brings a whole bunch of food into a cohesive fried dish! I can definitely see this becoming a staple in my kitchen again.

The best part about this recipe is that it can be ANY MEAL! I ate it for breakfast. It was amazing. I normally bring my breakfast to the office so I’m constantly looking for egg and/or vegetable dishes that heat up well in a microwave. This one hit the spot.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lg or 2 small sweet potatoes, spiralized and processed into rice
  • 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • green onions, sliced
  • 3 strips of bacon, diced
  • ½ lb. ground beef
  • a pinch of dried ginger
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 large kale leaves, chopped up
  • ¼ cup coconut aminos

Instructions:

  1. In the largest possible frying pan, add the diced bacon and cook over medium heat until crispy on the edges. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and place in a bowl for later.
  2. Use the remaining bacon fat to scramble the 3 eggs. Remove the eggs and set in another bowl to the side.
  3. Add the beef, 2 cloves of crushed garlic and dried ginger. Break up and mix together while cooking. When done, set in a third bowl to the side.
  4. Add sesame oil to the pan.   When hot, add the sliced green onions and the remaining two cloves of garlic and cook for about 3-5 min, until slightly cooked. Add the kale and sauté for another couple min, until it just starts to wilt. Set in a fourth bowl to the side.
  5. Turn the heat up to high and add more sesame oil to the pan as needed. Add the sweet potato “rice” and stir-fry continuously for 3-5 min until just starting to brown.
  6. Finally, pour ALL your bowls back into the pot and stir-fry together along with the coconut aminos for a couple more minutes to heat everything back up.
  7. Serve garnished with some additional chopped green onions.